In a bid to foster entrepreneurship and innovation in the health sector, the Mastercard Foundation Higher Education Health Collaborative is set to provide financial support to fifteen health business start-ups.
These start-ups will each have the opportunity to access $10,000 in funding to help bring their innovative healthcare solutions to the market.
The initiative is led by the Health Entrepreneurship pillar of the Collaborative, spearheaded by Prof. Wilberforce Owusu-Ansah. Prof. Owusu-Ansah has emphasized that the funding will not be provided in a lump sum. Instead, the start-ups will receive funding incrementally as they achieve key milestones, which can include equipment acquisition, licensing, and registration.
The Health Entrepreneurship pillar is one of the three core pillars of the Africa Higher Education Health Collaborative, aiming to nurture an entrepreneurial mindset and culture that supports healthcare entrepreneurs in creating meaningful innovations and job opportunities in the health sector.
One of the Collaborative’s partners, the Health Innovation Hub (H2i) at the University of Toronto, has encouraged the beneficiaries of the fund to actively collect data to demonstrate their impact on the healthcare ecosystem. This data collection will be crucial in helping these start-ups grow and thrive in the competitive healthcare market.
Additionally, the Mastercard Foundation Africa Higher Education Health Collaborative has broader objectives, including strengthening the capacity of healthcare professionals to meet the increasing demand for Primary Health Care (PHC), promoting advanced skills acquisition in various healthcare disciplines, and optimizing entrepreneurial ecosystems within African universities to launch and scale health start-ups.
This initiative is part of a long-term effort to create dignified and fulfilling jobs across health ecosystems in the next decade. The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) is one of the eight partners in the Higher Education Collaborative in Health and is dedicated to contributing to all three pillars of the health strategy: Health Employment, Health Entrepreneurship, and Health Ecosystems.